Object Impermanence: On Kimiko Hahn’s “Foreign Bodies”

"Foreign Bodies" cover

A caveat: Foreign Bodies is Kimiko Hahn’s tenth collection of poetry, but it’s the first and only one that I’ve read. By my own standards as a critic, this lack of familiarity with a writer’s work usually disqualifies me as a reviewer of one of their books. The only exception I make for this is when I read a book that is so fantastic and exhilarating and rich that I’m compelled to write less of a review and more of a celebration, a fan’s note, a paean to a particular book’s achievements. This is one of those cases.

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Uncanny Fiction in the Wake of Unspeakable Violence: On Natanya Ann Pulley’s “With Teeth”

"With Teeth" cover

At what point does fiction become horror fiction? Is there some immutable border, some checklist of elements to be tallied, that propels a particular story or novel out of the realm of the disconcerting and into that of the outright horrific? Certain notable collections, including Jac Jemc’s False Bingo and Amelia Gray’s Gutshot find a balance between deft narrative construction and something both ineffable and unspeakable. That’s the space in which Natanya Ann Pulley’s new collection With Teeth occupies as well: meticulously written, while all the while abounding with glimpses of the bizarre and brutal.

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Sunday Stories: “The Shorebirds and The Shaman”

Stars

The Shorebirds and The Shaman
by Kelly Fordon

Corinne’s husband, Ethan, died in his sleep. Right before bed, they’d had one of their rote conversations—the same one they had every night.

“What time should I get up?” Ethan was sitting on his side of the bed with his back to Corinne, fumbling with the alarm clock on his ancient phone. “Should I get up for yoga or sleep in?” 

“Blah, blah, blah,” Corinne said. “Why do you ask me that every single night as if I actually care when you get up?” Though it sounded awful in the retelling, she’d said this in a playful tone. They chided each other. That was their shtick.

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